At their F8 Developers conference today, Facebook is taking on some interesting privacy issues. They’ve announced users can now use Facebook to log-in to apps anonymously, giving them the ability to leave all private info some apps want to know about them at the door. The social giant is also allowing us to give apps permission in piecemeal portions, should we use Facebook as our log-in solution.
It should be clear at this point that Facebook’s acquisitions are not relegated to easily interpreted use-cases for social networking. Announcing today that they’d been acquired by Facebook, the ProtoGeo Oy and their Moves app are "delighted" that they’re going to be joining the brand giant.
It’s time for Facebook to make their move with Oculus VR, the makers of the virtual reality headset Oculus Rift. This acquisition was announced earlier this year not long after GDC 2014, and the introduction of Sony’s Project Morpheus - though there’s no direct evidence linking the two events. Here we’re seeing the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announcing that Facebook’s acquisition of Oculus VR is A-OK.
Facebook plans to eventually use its new "Nearby Friends" feature to power new location-based adverts and marketing, the social network has conceded, potentially souring what was generally seen as a privacy-mindful launch of the functionality. Nearby Friends began rolling out last week as a new addition to Facebook's mobile apps, optionally showing those on your friendslist your location, and making it easier to organize impromptu meet-ups. However, Facebook has more in mind than promoting socializing.
On launch, Paper was widely viewed as the best app Facebook had created, with many preferring it to the app proper. It lacked a few features the Facebook had, which left many wanting. With today’s update, Paper fans will get a host of new features that could have them migrating away from Facebook altogether.
Facebook has added a new feature to its mobile apps, Nearby Friends, allowing users of the social network to find those on their friendslist when they're nearby, though Facebook is clearly wary of a privacy backlash. The feature, which will be rolled out to the Android and iOS apps over the coming weeks, shows your GPS position and that of your friends on a map; however, Facebook is turning it off by default, and relying on users to opt-in instead.
Facebook is preparing to challenge PayPal and Google Wallet as an electronic payments service, reportedly expecting imminent regulatory approval that would enable it to operate a money transfer system in Europe. The social networking behemoth is said to be in the midst of approval proceedings from Ireland's central bank that, if secured, would allow it to issue its own currency equivalent that would be valid across European countries.
The second wave of Facebook’s sharing of Government Request data comes this week in short form. Facebook is one of a collection of groups to have begun showing off what they’re able in government data requests since the age of the NSA spill came to fruition last year.
Facebook will force iOS and Android app users to download the standalone Facebook Messenger app if they want to continue chatting, with plans to remove the messaging functionality from the regular Facebook app. The decision, likely to cause some consternation among Facebook users, is part of the social network's ongoing shift to standalone software for each key feature it offers, rather than bundling them together and running the risk that they get overlooked.